Clinging to Social Media for Value
I’ve had a hard time writing lately. Everything is so consumed by social media these days that I think most of the things we do on a day-to-day basis is for the approval of others–in some way, shape or form. I want to make sure my writing is for me and not manipulated by who may or may not be reading it. I know a few of my posts have been centered around particular audiences. Those posts have helped me to feel heard by the people who don’t want to hear me. I’m attempting to move beyond that.
Ever since I deleted my Facebook and Instagram I have felt better. Although, it has taken some getting used to. I’ve been pulling my camera out for moments for me, my loved ones or for my boys to look back on when they are older. I don’t take pictures for “likes” anymore. Because of this, life has felt much more intimate these past few months.
This post actually marks a year anniversary of moving back to South Dakota. The last year has been a total 180 in my life. During that 180, I have truly seen how much I have changed. Yes, I am the one who changed.
I fully own that I have completely changed.
My ex wasn’t the one who changed, I did.
I was blind and oblivious to what our life was. Then, when our first child came, things slowly started to come into focus. Responsibility, accountability and honesty were things I held to a much higher standard.
This was not received well.
My mind reshaped from that selfish, “happy go lucky” and irresponsible Becca to putting my children first, holding myself (and others) accountable and a responsible Becca.
I had become a mother.
I’ve been ostracized, mislabeled, slandered and ridiculed by some of the people in my innermost circles because of this change.
Prior to deleting my Facebook and Instagram, I dug into each account and took a very good look on how my life had progressed over the years. I compared this to how it actually was in my real life.
Things didn’t quite line up with my internet life and my real life.
Deleting my Facebook and Instagram has given me nothing but peace. It did take awhile to break the habit of feeling like something was missing; a false sense of inclusion is what was missing.
I had a few hundred friends on my social media platforms. When I deleted both accounts I had exactly seven people ask me where I went. SEVEN! That didn’t make me sad or angry, it just forced me to examine myself even more. Social media meant absolutely nothing in terms of relationships with the people in my life. All it did was foster a false sense of communication and connection between myself and others. Posting photos to hundreds removed the need to intimately give people the courtesy of a direct and private line of communication. Seeing somebody else’s photos, removed the need for me to communicate intimately and privately with them. I wasn’t communicating anymore, I was scrolling and clicking the “like” button. The actual direct and intentional exchange of communication was nearly dead for me, it’s now been revived. I was too dependent on social media and what it did for me on a superficial level, it took away too many truths about my reality.
Ironically, I feel less lonely now without my hundreds of “friends” than I did with my hundreds of “friends”. This former Facebook exec (you can click that) admits to contributing to the destruction of society, and it’s actually a little scary to watch. I’m not pretending to be completely absent from social media, as I do have a Twitter and a new Facebook account that I use for very impersonal things. The social media destruction that was consuming me was geared around my constant need for approval, in my actions, my photos and the life I allowed my “friends” to see. It’s not commonly referred to as Fakebook for nothing.
Since I have stopped posting pictures of myself and my children online, my life has gotten quieter. With the quiet has come an enormous amount of self reflection. Self reflection, as it turns out, is not that enjoyable when you aren’t happy with what you’re looking at. It’s forced me to deal with myself, acknowledge my mistakes and address those mistakes so that I can move forward. Move forward with the ultimate goal of not making those mistakes again. Also, with the quiet of a removed life on social media, I’ve been making more phone calls and communicating more with certain people in my life. That communication means so much more to me now.
I lost my life, but reading Matthew 10:39 (you can click that too)has dropped me to my knees to thank God for losing that life. The people that truly have love for my boys and I have made themselves known, and I am thankful for them.